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Harrison Avenue bridge plans start of demo, Central Scranton Expressway to be closed

Harrison Avenue bridge plans start of demo, Central Scranton Expressway to be closed

SCRANTON (WOLF) -- The old Harrison avenue bridge in Scranton has a lot of history, and a lot of problems.

"Bridges have a life cycle. This bridge is almost a hundred years old. It has lived its life cycle," said PennDOT Spokesperson James May.

It was built in 1920 will finally come down next week, after years of planning and construction.

"We have some pictures back in our office of just what it took for the men to actually build this bridge. When you think about not having the technology like we have today, almost 100 years ago they built this bridge, and it's just an enormous bridge," said May.

And this project means closing the Central Scranton Expressway in both directions, starting Wednesday night at 8 p.m. through Monday at 6 a.m.

Drivers will detour through Moosic street, and Davis street for trucks.

"We can't afford to be out there removing that bridge, right over the top of cars, with the danger of rocks and stone and stone falling onto the cars," May said.

The process of taking down this dinosaur will go in three phases.

"The first phase will be the span that's right over the top of the expressway. The second will be where we are here over top of the railroad. And then the third phase will be the one in which we use a controlled detonation, will take place for the center span, and that's the one over roaring brook," he said.

And while this lengthy closure may frustrate drivers.

"I think it's obviously going to cause congestion somewhere else," said Chandrika Collins, in town this weekend for her son's baseball game at the University.

The final product might just be worth it.

"Oh I think in the end it'll be great for everyone," she said.

PennDOT says they plan to have the controlled detonation for the remainder of the bridge May 18th.

The entire project is expected to wrap up by the end of 2018.

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